Direct delivery from Japan and cross-border trade between Taiwan and Japan has just become a whole lot easier. Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten Inc and Taiwanese e-commerce operator PChome Online Inc have signed a cooperation agreement to pool their respective membership bases and services. This will enable the establishment of a unified reward system, which will combine PChome’s "PPoint" and Rakuten’s “Super Points,” allowing customers to accumulate and redeem reward points using a single system. Under the agreement, cross-border trade will be expanded to promote a Taiwan-Japan strategic alliance.
According to PChomestore chairman Jan Hung-tze, he established the e-commerce Web site pcstore.com.tw in 2004, several years before China’s Tmall, having observed the Rakuten model for a period of five years. Jan says the Web site has a 10 million-strong member base in Taiwan and has been looking to expand overseas. President of Rakuten’s Asia operations, Hiroshi Takasawa, says Taiwan is an extremely important market for the company.
Rakuten and PChomestore started collaborating six months ago by allowing PChome’s “PPoint” and Rakuten’s “Super Points” to be accumulated and used together, and expanding e-commerce trade between Taiwan and Japan. This means that Taiwanese customers can use the ruten.com Web site to get a taste of what is currently trending in Japan and, through a Chinese-language interface, purchase items using their local currency. The system also allows Taiwanese customers to enjoy direct shipping from Japan, in addition to other Rakuten e-commerce services.
Photo courtesy of PChome
Benefits provided by Rakuten’s Taiwan credit card can be accumulated when making purchases on the PChome Web site, and PChome will make Rakuten’s Kobo e-Reader available on its PChome24h Web site and provide a nationwide, 24hr delivery service. Rakuten and PChome will also team up their logistics operations in Taiwan.
PChome’s Jan says he feels an affinity toward Rakuten’s business model and opened negotiations with the company in 2009 to discuss possible areas for collaboration. Jan traveled to Japan to meet with Rakuten’s founder Hiroshi Mikitani, but at the time the overall terms of the agreement were not fully hammered out. However, in light of Rakuten’s ever-expanding range of services, both sides have now agreed to embark upon an initial phase of collaboration, combining their respective membership bases and reward schemes.
Once the two companies formalize their collaboration, it will be possible for Japanese goods to be directly shipped to Taiwan by Rakuten shop owners in Japan, making cross-border trade much simpler.
Photo courtesy of Rakuten
(Translated by Edward Jones, Taipei Times)
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
1. Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten Inc’s founder, Hiroshi Takasawa, held a joint news conference with Taiwan’s PChome Online Inc last month in Taipei.
2. PChome Online and Rakuten will integrate their respective reward point systems starting from next month.
3. PChome has a 10,000-strong customer base in Taiwan.
4. Under the agreement, PChome will begin selling Rakuten’s Kobo e-Reader on its Web site.
5. Under the agreement Rakuten will allow direct shipping to Taiwan of products sold on its Japanese Web site.
(Edward Jones, Taipei Times)
1. cooperation agreement phr.
合作協議 (he2 zuo4 xie2 yi4)
2. accumulate v.
累積 (lei3 ji1)
3. collaborate v.
合作 (he2 zuo4)
4. e-commerce phr.
電商 (dian4 shang1)
5. get a taste of phr.
體驗 (ti3 yan4)
6. feel an affinity toward phr.
情有獨鍾 (qing2 you3 du2 zhong1)
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